Thursday, July 30, 2020

International Day of Friendship : Sharing the human spirit through friendship !

credits: Elyx Yak

Stars has 5 ends
Square has 4 ends
Triangle has 3 ends
Line has 2 ends
but Circle of our friendship has no end…
Happy Friendship Day!

International Friendship Day, celebrated on July 30, is the day people come together with their friends celebrate each other and the relationship that exists between them. No matter how old or young we are, friends are what keep us going.
The International Day of Friendship was proclaimed in 2011 by the UN General Assembly with the idea that friendship between peoples, countries, cultures and individuals can inspire peace efforts and build bridges between communities.
However, the world faces many challenges forces - such as poverty, violence, and human rights abuses - among many others - that undermine peace, security, development and social harmony among the world's peoples.

credits: UNESCO

“Friendship like ours doesn’t solve life challenges but because of our friendship I know the challenges are not mine alone.”

 C. Sampson

The biggest one, the COVID-19 pandemic. The nationwide closures are impacting over 60% of the world’s population. Several countries have implemented localized closures or social distance impacting millions of additional families, young people and older people.
To confront those crises and challenges, their root causes must be addressed by promoting and defending a shared spirit of human solidarity that takes many forms. The simplest of which is friendship.

credits: unknown
via Google Images


For without friends no one would choose to live, though he had all other goods” 


Western philosophers have enthusiastically praised friendship. It has inspired Aristotle, Francis Bacon, C.S. Lewis, and Mary E. Hunt, who have esteemed its benefits, especially the reciprocal commitment to nurture each friend’s ‘best self’.

The civic dimension of friendship was prominent as some argued that it was part of the social glue that held societies together. 

"Friendship redirects attention to the relational dimension of education, placing relationships at the center of the learning environment. Whether between students, between teachers, or between students and teachers, a friendship-based educational model emphasizes how these relationships can be more open, mutually supportive, and focused on nurturing the best in each person."

Philosophy Now, Friendship

credits: unknown
via Google Images

Intl Friendship Day provides world-class education that motivates students to achieve social and academic standards, enjoy life and learning through friendship and develop as ethical, literate, well-rounded and self-sufficient citizens.
Through friendship - by accumulating bonds of camaraderie and developing strong ties of trust - students can contribute to the fundamental shifts for life that are urgently needed to achieve lasting health, stability, weave a safety net that will protect us all, and generate passion for a better world where all are united for the greater good.

Teachers have an essential role in creating and maintaining the friendships amongst the students in the inclusive classroom. 

credits: Agnes Illustrations

Do you believe in friendship's power to craft a better world for all? Send send a greeting card, make a phone call, send a special text message, or meet some friend. 
"Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.” 
Anais Nin 
Copyright © 2020G-Souto'sBlog,®
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Schools : Intl Friendship Day : Sharing the human spirit through friendship ! by G-Souto is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
sources: UN/ Philosophy Now 

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Science : Rosalind Franklin Centenary : Image Competition & Essay Competition

Rosalind Franklin [1920-2020]

This year, to mark 100 years since the birth of Rosalind Franklin The Rosalind Franklin Institute is looking back and celebrating on the life and work of this amazing scientist. The Rosalind Franklin Institute will be highlighting how many current discoveries and inventions would not have been possible without Rosalind Franklin’s work

Mys usual readers know that I published an article about Rosalind Franklin on her 93rd birthday the 25th July 2013.

The Franklin Family
via BBC
Scientist Rosalind Franklin would have been "totally amazed" that 100 years after her birth she is being commemorated, according to her sister.
She is best known for her pioneering work which guided James Crick and Francis Watson to unlock DNA's secrets.
But far more of her short career was spent unravelling the molecular structures of coal and viruses. 
Jenifer Glynn, 90, her sister, said she would have been pleased if her career "encourages girls into science".

"I think she would be totally amazed at the fact that 100 years after her birth there's such commemorations," 
Jenifer Glynn
Mrs Glynn said before her "sadly early death" aged 37 in 1958, she worked across biology, chemistry and physics, with a "focus on research that mattered to society."

Rosalind Franklin Papers 1951-1954

"She would have also been amazed at the idea she has become a feminist icon - it was not in her mind at all.
"She was aware that it was harder for women, but wasn't trying to blaze a trail, although nothing would have pleased her more than the fact that perhaps it encourages girls into science."
Mrs Glynn said before her "sadly early death" aged 37 in 1958, she worked across biology, chemistry and physics, with a "focus on research that mattered to society".
Newnham College and the Churchill Archives Centre in Cambridge, which holds her scientific papers, are marking the Centenary of her birth this 25 July 2020.

Rosalind Franklin 100 Image Competition

  • Rosalind Franklin 100 Image & Essay Competitions:

This year marks the Centenary of Rosalind Franklin’s birth. It's an exciting time for the institute named in her honour
As the institute prepares to open the new building, a four storey on the Harwell Campus which will house a world-unique technologies.
The Rosalind Franklin Institute was looking for images from member institutions to celebrate both its namesake and the interdisciplinary work she has inspired
  • Images in three categoriesfactexperience, and experiment
The Rosalind Franklin Centenary Image Competition was open on 14th April and will close on 25th July, with the winner being announced in September 2020.

Rosalind Franklin 100 Essay Competition

At the same time an essay competition for undergraduate scientists at member institutions was running as well for passionate about exploring the intersection between physical and life sciences. 
  • The Rosalind Franklin Centenary Essay Competition was open on 14th April and will close on 25th July, with the winner being announced in September 2020.

Rosalind Frank
Visionary scientist
Illustration by Jody Hewgill for TIME
Time Magazine, 1953
In 1953, Time published an article about Rosalind Franklin on the cover included in the well known project 100 Women of the Year.

 In 1953, Watson, who had been investigating the structure of DNA as well, was shown the image and immediately knew its significance. 

"The instant I saw the picture my mouth fell open and my pulse began to race,” he wrote in his 1968 book, The Double Helix. “The black cross of reflections which dominated the picture could only arise from a helical structure.”

As we know, at age 37, Franklin died of cancer (1958). Only now is she being appreciated. 

"In my cancer advocacy work, I’ve met female scientists who are welcomed and respected by their male colleagues. I’m sorry Rosalind Franklin wasn’t. But from now on, whenever you hear the names of the two men who discovered DNA, make it a troika: Franklin, Watson and Crick - in that order."

Katie Couric, Time, 1953

Rosalind Franklin Centenary 

Well, we will be back in September with the names of the winners of the two competitions: Rosalind Franklin image competition and Rosalind Franklin essay competition.

"I think she would be totally amazed at the fact that 100 years after her birth there's such commemorations," 
Jenifer Glynn

Note: Jenifer Glynn is the sister of Rosalind Franklin


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Wednesday, July 15, 2020

World Youth Skills Day : Skills for a Resilient Youth : resources

World Youth Skills Day 2020 

World Youth Skills Day 2020 will take place in a challenging context. The COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown measures have led to the worldwide closure of technical and vocational education and training (TVET) institutions, threatening the continuity of skills development.

Currently, more than 1 in 6 young people are out of work due to COVID-19. As young people are called upon to contribute to the recovery effort, they will need to be equipped with the skills to successfully manage evolving challenges and the resilience to adapt to future disruptions.

Respondents to a survey of TVET institutions, jointly collected by UNESCO, the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the World Bank, reported that distance training has become the most common way of imparting skills, with considerable difficulties regarding, among others, curricula adaptation, trainee and trainer preparedness, connectivity, or assessment and certification processes.

Theme 2020: 

“Skills for a Resilient Youth”

The World Youth Skills Day 2020 under the theme “Skills for a Resilient Youth” is co-organized by the Permanent Missions of Portugal and Sri Lanka to the United Nations, together with UNESCO, ILO and the Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth.

The focus will be on resilience. In the short term, this implies making young people resilient to rapid changes in prospects for employment and entrepreneurship in the sectors that are hardest hit by the crisis, namely wholesale and retail trade, autorepair, manufacturing, real estate, administrative activities, accommodation and food services. 

In the longer term, this implies helping skills development systems adapt to changes in the world economy that the pandemic and recession will bring.

Owing to the COVID-19 situation, the celebrations of the World Youth Skills Day 2020 will have a virtual format. A panel discussion will bring together multiple stakeholders in skills development including young people, member States, TVET institutions, the private sector, workers’ organizations, policy makers and development partners. An online discussion with the audience will follow.

  • assess the short-, medium-, and long-term impacts of the pandemic in different country contexts;
  • share good practices from TVET institutions about how they have responded to the pandemic. For example, how institutions have provided distance learning in no-tech, low-tech and high-tech scenarios, and how teachers and trainers have been supported;
  • gain insights from private sector, employee, and employer stakeholders about the impact of the pandemic on their sectors, and the changes in job profiles and skills needs that they foresee;
  • learn from young people about their hopes and fears as well as the opportunities that they see moving forward;
  • reflect on how TVET systems can respond to the short- and medium-term impact of the pandemic, while also keeping in mind longer-lasting challenges.

Prior to the current crisis, young people aged 15-24 were three times more likely than adults to be unemployed and often faced a prolonged school-to-work transition period. 

Skills Agenda's objective is to equip young people with the skills to successfully manage evolving challenges in green and digital transformations and the resilience to adapt to future disruptions.

Submission: TVET Youth Stories 2020

Schools and technical and vocational education and training (TVET) institutions around the world have closed in massive numbers due to the Covid-19 pandemic. As young people have continued to showcase their adaptability and resilience despite the current challenges, UNESCO-UNEVOC encouraged them to submit videos of how they were continuing to learn during lockdown. 

These stories are part of a campaign to mark World Youth Skills Day (WYSD) and highlight the importance of skills development for a resilient youth. 

Tell your story

Click here to watch the full playlist of #TVETYouthStories

In post-COVID-19 societies, as young people are called upon to contribute to the recovery effort, they will need to be equipped with the skills to successfully manage evolving challenges and the resilience to adapt to future disruptions.

Let’s encourage the youth to acquire valuable and resilient skills because the success of the nation always depends on the success of its youth. 


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Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Schools : Women in science : Nettie Stevens broke gender barriers ?

“Of the graduate students that I have had during the last twelve years I have had no one that was as capable and independent in research as Miss Stevens.”

Thomas Hunt Morgan, in Science journal

Nettie Stevens was an American geneticist born the 7 July 1861 n Vermont and grew up in Westford, MA as a fifth generation New Englander and the daughter of a carpenter. 

Nettie Stevens was one of the first American women to have her work recognized as a solid contribution to science.

Nettie Stevens’ 155th birthday

doodler: Lydia Nichols

  • Google Doodle:

On July 7 2016, Google celebrated what would have been the Stevens' 155th birthday. 

This brought her name out of obscurity. Like so many female scientists, perhaps most famously Rosalind Franklin she had virtually been erased from scientific history. 

Building on research by Edmund Beecher Wilson and Thomas Hunt Morgan at Bryn Mawr, Nettie Stevens discovered the connection between chromosomes and physicality. Her breakthrough evolved into the XY sex-determination system, now taught in classrooms around the world.

Nettie Stevens
credits: unknown
via Alta Sciences

  • Some biographic facts:

After graduating in 1880, Nettie Maria Stevens moved to Lebanon, New Hampshire to teach high school zoology, physiology, mathematics, English, and Latin. After three years, she returned to Vermont to continue her studies. 

She continued her education at Westfield Normal School, now Westfield State University. She completed the four-year course in two years and graduated with the highest scores in her class.

The role of DNA in chromosomes was unknown in Stevens’ time
via Famous Scientists

Nettie Stevens went back to school at 35 and finally, at age 39, she started working as a research scientist and was fascinated by the process of sex determination. Her studies focused on mealworms where she discovered that the females produced only X chromosomes the males had reproductive cells with both X and Y.  She concluded that sex is inherited as a chromosomal factor and that males determine the gender of the offspring. This work was published in 1905.

Unfortunately for Nettie, another researcher Edmund Wilson made a similar discovery at about the same time and received the majority of the praise by the scientific community. But Stevens is generally considered to have made the larger theoretical leap, which was ultimately proven correct.

Nettie Stevens' microscope 
credits: Bryn Mawr College

Why did she not get credit for her work? Was it the lack of a permanent position and lab of her own? Or was it a case of gender discrimination? Some argue that Wilson was given credit not due to primacy of results, but the substance of his entire body of research. While it can't correct this historical oversight, we will acknowledge the contributions of Nettie Stevens in genetic. 

Though her lifespan was short, she died in 1912, Nettie Stevens was so incredibly accomplished, publishing nearly 40 papers among numerous other achievements. She truly changed the field of science and genetics with her discovery.

Nettie Stevens
credits: Rachel Ignotofsky


Stevens’ time in the spotlight would not arrive until after her death, when progress in science would be followed by progress in the way we recognize revolutionary women.

Nettie Stevens
credits: Rachel Ignotofsky

Promote Science studies for girls in school and university. Nettie Stevens is a very good example to share with your students, young girls or young women.

Encourage young girls to ponder the world and the daily ins and outs of their lives.

Rosalind FranklinMarie CurieDorothy Hodgkin, Katherine Johnson and so many others, are awesome examples of revolutionary women that girls and women who choose scientific careers, stunning success is possible.

Nettie Stevens
credits: Rachel Ignotofsky

Other resources:

Women in Science highlights the contributions of fifty notable women to the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) from the ancient to the modern world. 

celebrates the achievements of the intrepid women who have paved the way for the next generation of female engineers, biologists, mathematicians, doctors, astronauts, physicists, and more! 

This fascinating collection also contains infographics about relevant topics such as lab equipment, rates of women currently working in STEM fields, and an illustrated scientific glossary

The trailblazing women profiled include well-known figures like primatologist Jane Goodall, as well as lesser-known pioneers such as Katherine Johnson, the African-American physicist and mathematician who calculated the trajectory of the 1969 Apollo 11 mission to the moon.


Promoting the work of women in science and encouraging girls to enter the sciences is important for achieving the Global Goals for Sustainable Development.

“Humanity cannot afford not to use half of its creative potential”.



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